President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf
President Sirleaf Declares State Of Emergency Over Ebola
By Prince Nagbe
MONROVIA, August 7 (LINA) – President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf has declared a State of Emergency throughout the country as “an extraordinary measure” aimed at curbing further spread of the deadly Ebola virus.
She said the State of Emergency will be forwarded to the National Legislature accompanied by an explanation of the facts and circumstances leading to the declaration as required by law.
According to President Sirleaf, the declaration of the State of Emergency, which is in line with Article 86 A and B of the Constitution, will be in force for the period of 90 days beginning Wednesday, August 6.
She made the declaration Wednesday in a State of the Nation address broadcast from the state-owned Liberia Broadcasting System in Monrovia.
President Sirleaf said the ramifications and consequences of the Ebola Viral Disease (EVD) “now constitute unrest and are affecting the security and wellbeing of the country amounting to a clear and present danger.”
She observed that actions allowed by Statutes under Public Health Law are no longer adequate to deal with the Ebola epidemic as comprehensive and holistic as the outbreak requires.
The President also noted that the scope and skill of the epidemic as well as the severity and deadliness of the virus now exceed the statutory responsibility of any one government ministry or agency.
The Liberian leader pointed out that in the midst of these circumstances, the ‘State of Emergency’ is important for the survival of the nation and the protection of the lives of the people of Liberia, adding, “The Government and people of Liberia in this national crisis require extraordinary measures.”
President Sirleaf said the government will under the State of Emergency also institute other extraordinary measures such as suspending certain rights and privileges as mandated by the Constitution if need be.